Friday, March 30, 2007

The Big 8 Peace Firms vs. The AEI and the Heritage Foundation

Have you noticed that none of the Big 8 peace firms are funding the push for a diplomatic solution in Iran through their multi-billion dollar infrastructure. Why?

Because their are no Big 8 peace firms! There is no multi-billion dollar infrastructure pushing peace.

You have a billion dollar think tank industry hammering the media and co-opting an entire broadcast medium because it is seen as a profitable way to keep their business growing. And EVEN if it turns out that MILLIONS of people are damaged by their views and policies, they are still seen as a success by the people funding them because their donor foundations and corporations are doing better. The funders of AEI and the Heritage Foundation are getting more money and since they are the ones paying for things, life is lush.

War. Pushing it. Big Time.

Check out this AEI and Heritage Foundation info from the good people at Sourcewatch.
Donate to the Center for Media and Democracy or join them. I've been a member for years and I love Stauber's and Sheldon Rampton's books.

AEI Funding

Between 1985 and 2001, AEI received $29,653,933 from the following funding sources:

Amounts contributed by the Coors Foundation are not included.

Funding has come from many other sources, such as Amoco, the Kraft Foundation, and the Procter & Gamble Fund. AEI, unlike some think tanks, has no endowment - something which has led the organization into financial embarrassment in 1985 when its operating budget outstripped its donations by 25 percent (Newsweek, 1984).

Corporate donations are not public, but it is known that during 1997, Philip Morris contributed $100,000 to the Institute [90]; and during 2005, ExxonMobil contributed $252,500 (including an estimated 50% of ExxonMobil's donation to the AEI Brookings "Joint Center".) [91].

Heritage Foundation Funding

The Heritage Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organisation. In its annual report it states that "we rely on the financial contributions of the gemeral public: individuals, foundations and corporations. We accept no government funds and perform no contract work." [2]

2004 Budget

In calendar year 2004 the Heritage Foundation spent over $36.3 million on its operations. That year the foundation raised over $21.3million from individual contributors and $8.46 million from foundations. [3]

While corporations provided only $1.98 million - 6% of Heritage’s contributions in 2004 - they none the less have significant interest in the foundations policy output. There's defence contractor Lockheed Martin, finance companies such as the Mortgage Insurance Companies of America and Merrill Lynch, auto companies including Honda and Ford, drug and medical companies Johnson & Johnson, GlaxoSmithKline, America’s Health Insurance Plans, Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation, Pfizer, PhRMA, the oil company ChevronTexaco, United Parcel Service and, chipping in over $100,000 each, Talk Radio Network and Microsoft. [4]

Historical Funding

Between 1985 and 2003, Media Transparency reports that the following funders provided $57,497,537 (unadjusted for inflation) to the Heritage Foundation [5]:

Right Web says of the Heritage Foundation:

"The foundation received $2. 2 million from the Federation of Korean Industries in the early 1980s. Initially it was believed this donation came from the Korean Central Intelligence Agency (which would make the Heritage Foundation a foreign agent of Korea), but the Federation later stated that the donation came at the encouragement of the KCIA."
"The Heritage Foundation's income has increased every year since 1981. The progression has been: 1981--$7. 1 million; 1982-$8. 6 million; 1983--$10. 6 million; 1984--$10. 7 million; 1985-$11. 6 million; 1986--$14. 0 million; 1987--$14. 3 million; and 1988--$14. 6 million. In 1988, foundations provided 38 percent of Heritage's income, individuals provided 34 percent, and corporations gave 17 percent; the remainder came from investments and sales of materials."[6]

Case studies

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Monday, March 26, 2007

Talk Radio Wants War in Iran

When I talk about inciting violence on the radio it was often focused on individuals as well as groups. Stories about individuals as targets of violence was something that people could grasp as just plain wrong. But equally disturbing is the constant drum beat to use violence as the first and ONLY option in dealing with all foreign policy issues. Violence is THE knee jerk reaction of neocons and talk radio hosts. It makes them feel "manly".

Do they not feel the impact of this war? They must not.

Why else would they want to whip up the people for yet another war?

I'm getting really sick of this "who is a real man?" question. Calling Edwards "The Breck" girl as a slur. (I wonder how many overweight balding pundits would love to have Edward's good hair and looks?) And how would a "real man" respond to a hostage crisis?

They will bring up Jimmy Carter and misrepresent what happened and HOW it happened and WHO did what when. They will forget the REAL role their god Ronnie played in that affair.

It really is all about THEIR "masculinity" or their idea of what it takes to be a man. People who think that bombing people is the right response to any situation are not strong.

Do you care more about getting the 15 people out of harms way or do you care more about "looking weak"? Do they care more about "sending a message" than saving the messenger?

What if you knew that you had a solution that would make you look weak to the pundits but would definitely guarantee that those people would live AND you wouldn't have to deal with all the mess that a bombing run would start? Would you take it?

And WHO are you afraid of calling you a coward? Rush Limbaugh? Sean Hannity? People who have never served, who have to use chemicals to get it up and get off?

You want to prove you are strong and SMART? Figure out a way to get them out without getting into another war. That is what a real man does.

A real man worries less about what Chris Matthews thinks of him and more about the lives of his troops. A real man cares more about effective action that being called weak by some entertainer.

Only the people who are REALLY insecure care more about the opinions of some chattering class than real lives.

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